wnol.info April 23 2018

Double boost for Chelsea ahead of trip to Stoke

April 23 2018, 05:36 | Van Peters

Hughes Chelsea missing the 'dark arts' brought by Diego Costa

Hughes Chelsea missing the 'dark arts' brought by Diego Costa

Chelsea will now turn their attentions back to Premier League affairs and their trip to the bet365 Stadium to take on Stoke City on Saturday afternoon.

Stoke have won only two of their 18 Premier League matches against Chelsea, with both victories coming at home: 3-2 in December 2013 and 1-0 in November 2015.

And on Thursday the 28-year-old Brazil-born Spain worldwide was granted his wish after months of acrimony, claim and counter claim when Chelsea and Atletico agreed a fee reported to be in the region of £58million.

The Blues have no other absentees but Diego Costa will not feature as he nears a transfer to Atletico Madrid.

"We want to thank him for what he did with this club". This showed we trust him.

The Italian was asked about the breakdown in relations with Costa, but met the question with a firm rebuttal. The Brazilian center half had been the rock at the heart of Chelsea's defence and I think personally that Stoke will fancy their chances with the Brazilian banned. I'm not interested to continue talking about this issue. 'I'm working with my players and I'm happy to be working with them.

Chelsea's 3-4-3 remains the club's primary formation after Conte won the title with the system last season. We have three games to play and there is the possibility to pick him from the start for these games, for sure'.

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'For him it is important for him to play, especially after overcoming what was a very bad injury.

Chelsea play at Atletico next Wednesday in Champions League Group C, and all parties will be relieved the matter has been resolved.

Now Costa's future has been resolved, Chelsea can look to the future. "Bakayoko is fit. It was a manual accident but he's fit and available for the Stoke game".

"No [injury news] - all players are available apart from Danny Drinkwater who is continuing to work to recover", said Conte.

Midfielder Bakayoko, signed for around £40million from Monaco in July, was involved in a minor road incident on his way home from training on Thursday.

Chelsea's Eden Hazard could make his first league start of the season.

"Honestly I felt a really good atmosphere in the changing room and link between old and young players, this is the right way".

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